The annual report to Congress, released Thursday, highlights China's growing military, economic and diplomatic clout and how Beijing is leveraging this to rapidly build its international footprint and establish regional dominance. In the case of China's air power, the report states that Chinese bombers are developing capabilities to hit targets as far from China as possible. "Over the last three years, the PLA (People's Liberation Army) has rapidly expanded its overwater bomber operating areas, gaining experience in critical maritime regions and likely training for strikes against US and allied targets," the document states, noting how China is pushing its operations out into the Pacific.
Tsunamis will become more common and more ferocious with global warming, scientists have warned after a study found that global sea level rises will increase the risk of coastal cities being wiped out. Smaller earthquakes that currently pose no serious tsunami threat could unleash waves capable of inundating coastal cities, researchers found in a study focusing on the city of Macau in China. Currently it is considered safe from tsunamis, despite lying within a major earthquake zone. At today's sea level, it would take a very powerful earthquake tipping past magnitude 8.8 to cause widespread tsunami flooding in Macau. But a half-metre rise in sea level - predicted to occur in the region by 2060 - could more than double the chances of a huge tsunami swamping the territory, according to the research. A three-foot sea level rise, expected by 2100, would increase the risk up to 4.7 times. The source of the earthquake danger is the Manila Trench, a massive crack in the floor of the South China Sea formed by the collision of two tectonic plates. It has generated numerous earthquakes, though none larger than magnitude 7.8 since the 1560s. A modest rise in sea levels would greatly amplify the tsunami threat from smaller earthquakes, the computer simulation study showed. Cities most prone to natural disaster Lead researcher Dr Robert Weiss, from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) in the US, said: "Our research shows that sea-level rise can significantly increase the tsunami hazard, which means that smaller tsunamis in the future can have the same adverse impacts as big tsunamis would today. "The South China Sea is an excellent starting point for such a study because it is an ocean with rapid sea-level rise and also the location of many mega cities with significant worldwide consequences if impacted." The team's findings are reported in the journal Science Advances.
China is developing a satellite system that will allow it to closely watch the South China Sea, the China News Service reported, helping it to consolidate control over the disputed waters. The first of 10 satellites is expected to be launched in the second half of 2019, China News said, citing the Sanya Institute of Remote Sensing, which is heading the project with sponsorship from the government of Hainan, China’s southernmost island province. Cameras and identification technology on the satellites will allow China to monitor ships sailing in the waters, the news agency reported.
The ASEAN hosted meetings have come and gone and the US-China soft power struggle for dominance in the South China Sea has continued unabated. If anything it has accelerated and expanded. At the meetings, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo stated in an indirect but obvious warning to China that Washington was committed to the rule of law there. He then announced what some saw as a token 300 million dollar security aid package to Southeast Asian countries prioritizing maritime security. https://www.business-standard.com/article/international/in-a-bid-to-counter-china-us-pledges-300-mn-for-security-in-indo-pacific-118080400508_1.html China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi vowed that China would maintain
The recent 51st ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Meeting (AMM) and Related Meetings in Singapore saw progress on the South China Sea issue. This demonstrates the importance of ASEAN as a regional anchor and the viability of ASEAN centrality in the midst of geopolitical change, in spite of ASEAN's obvious weaknesses and limitations. The 51st ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Meeting (AMM) and Related Meetings in Singapore from 30 July to 4 August 2018 was generally hailed as a success. Most notably there were no reported delays in the issuance of its Joint Communique this time round. This was unlike in previous instances when the Joint Communique was delayed as a result of seemingly intractable issues, especially
BEIJING (AP) — China said Tuesday that Malaysia should handle any problems it has with multibillion-dollar Chinese-backed infrastructure projects through talks, a day after the Southeast Asian country's leader told The Associated Press his government wants to cancel such deals.
MANILA, Philippines (AP) — The Philippine president said Tuesday that China's claim to airspace above newly built islands and surrounding waters in the disputed South China Sea "is wrong" and Beijing should not tell others to leave those areas to avoid possible clashes.
BEIJING — China on Tuesday blasted a U.S. military spending bill that calls for development of plans to help self-ruled Taiwan improve its defenses and warned of possible damage to cooperation in other areas. The provision in the 2019 military budget authorization "is full of cold war thinking" and "interferes in China's internal affairs," said a Ministry of Defense statement. It said the measure "ruins the atmosphere" for military cooperation. Beijing claims Taiwan, which split with the mainland in 1949, as part of its territory and has threatened to invade. Washington has no official relations with the island's democratically elected government but is obliged by U.S. law to see that it has
China threatens foreign ships and planes in the South China Sea on a "daily basis," according to members of the Philippine military. Warnings directed at the Philippines are much more menacing than those directed at the US military, leading some experts to question whether or not China is purposefully calibrating its responses to intimidate smaller, weaker claimant states. Both the armed forces of the Philippines and the US military continue their operations as planned, disregarding Chinese threats and warnings. China is threatening foreign ships and planes operating in the South China Sea on a "daily" basis, according to the chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines. "It's a daily occurrence," General
Following drills in the Yellow Sea and South China Sea, the Chinese People's Liberation Army Navy conducted anti-missile drills in the East China Sea over the weekend. The drills were reportedly designed to counter potential missile threats from US, Japan, and other potential combatants. The exercises come on the heels of an exercise in which the US, Japan, and Australia practiced sinking a ship into the sea with missiles fired from land, air, and sea. The exercise showed how a conflict with the Chinese Navy might play out. Chinese People's Liberation Army Navy ships drilled in the East China Sea over the weekend, practicing honing its skills and countering missile threats from rivals like Japan,
PUTRAJAYA, Malaysia (AP) — Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad commented on lopsided China-backed projects, treatment of Myanmar's Rohingya Muslims, the South China Sea furor, a water deal with Singapore and the country's financial mess in an interview Monday with The Associated Press. Here are excerpts: AX CHINA-BACKED PROJECTS Days before heading to Beijing for his first visit since his stunning electoral victory three months ago, Mahathir said Malaysia doesn't need a Chinese-backed $20 billion East Coast Rail Link and two energy pipelines worth $2.3 billion. The projects have been suspended pending renegotiation. Most Read Nation & World Stories “We don't think they are viable. So if
Mahathir Mohamad, at 93 the world's oldest prime minister, spoke with The Associated Press days before he heads to Beijing for his first visit since returning to power in a stunning electoral upset three months ago. Mahathir said he wants to maintain good relations with China and welcomes its investment, so long as the projects benefit Malaysia.